[ shuh-reyd; especially British shuh-rahd ]
/ ʃəˈreɪd; especially British ʃəˈrɑd /


charades, (used with a singular verb) a game in which the players are typically divided into two teams, members of which take turns at acting out in pantomime a word, phrase, title, etc., which the members of their own team must guess.
a word or phrase acted out in this game.
a blatant pretense or deception, especially something so full of pretense as to be a travesty.

Nearby words

  1. characterization,
  2. characterize,
  3. characterless,
  4. charactery,
  5. charactonym,
  6. charades,
  7. charanga,
  8. charango,
  9. charas,
  10. charbroiled

Origin of charade

1770–80; < French < Provençal charrad(o) entertainment, equivalent to charr(á) to chat, chatter (from imitative root) + -ado -ade1 Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for charades

British Dictionary definitions for charades


/ (ʃəˈrɑːdz) /


(functioning as singular) a parlour game in which one team acts out each syllable of a word, the other team having to guess the word

Word Origin for charades

C18: from French charade entertainment, from Provençal charrado chat, from charra chatter, of imitative origin


/ (ʃəˈrɑːd) /


an episode or act in the game of charades
mainly British an absurd act; travesty
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for charades


Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper